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#10423785 - 11/20/14 09:13 AM IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX

Have you heard about this one? The IFFF has introduced a “Fly Tying Skills Awards Program”. It is a three level program, with Bronze, Silver, and Gold awards.

Basically, the fly tier submits 3 examples of a set of required and optional patterns to be judged for consistency, proportions, pattern accuracy, and other areas.

OK, I’ll admit it, I was skeptical. After all, I could care less about the certificate that you receive for achieving each level and I doubt if I would ever show it to anyone or even remember where I put it after receiving it.

But the more I think about this new program, the more I like it. And I think I’ll give it a shot and will try to find time over the holiday’s to tie up the flies.

After all, how many of us have ever actually sat down with an experienced fly tier and received a real critique of our tying skills? I do that often with my casting and it has helped my casting skills significantly. But I’ve never done that with my fly tying. So, why not take advantage of the opportunity?

When I first read the list of flies for the Bronze award, it sounded too easy. But on second thought, even if they are simple patterns, you have to tie 3 examples of each pattern that are identical to each other…. That is not as easy as it sounds. AND you need to actually follow the real pattern and materials… I seldom if ever actually do that, I’m always substituting or changing materials or colors. Successfully completing these patterns could be more challenging than it first appears to be. It also requires you demonstrate skills tying a variety of different fly patterns, including emergers, dry’s, wets, nymphs, and more.

They’ve only posted the requirements for the Bronze level and after thinking about these requirements, I think the Gold award will be very difficult to achieve.

Here’re the details:

http://www.fedflyfishers.org/Tying/FlyTyingSkillsAwardsProgram.aspx

The fly list for the Bronze award are the tie three examples of each of these patterns:
- Grey Goose Emerger
- Pheasant Tail Variant Dry Fly
- Partridge and Orange Soft Hackle Wet Fly
- Woolly Bugger
- Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear Nymph
- Plus three more patterns of the tier’s choosing

Take a look at this program and see what you think. The more I’ve thought about it, the more I like it as a way to help improve my own fly tying skills. After all, how often do world class fly tiers offer to review your flies and offer suggestions to help you become a better fly tier?
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10423988 - 11/20/14 10:36 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
kelkay Online   content
TFF Guru

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 23492
Loc: East TX
Sounds like a cool thing to do Rex. I wonder though, if you have to be a member to do it?
If you pull up the Bronze handbook, it says you have to be a member. Bummer.


Edited by kelkay (11/20/14 10:43 AM)
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The greatest danger to American freedom is a government that ignores the Constitution." Thomas Jefferson

You Don’t Love Something You Want to ‘Fundamentally Transform’ Mark Levin






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#10424038 - 11/20/14 10:52 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Yes, I think you have to be a member. But I like the organization and have been a member for years.
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10424168 - 11/20/14 11:50 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
moonriver Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 08/15/09
Posts: 4585
Open wide! I do mean the wallet! Hahaha.

Rex, I am interested in this program. I guess that I have to join in first. Will need your help though.
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#10425411 - 11/20/14 09:32 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: moonriver]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Originally Posted By: moonriver

Rex, I am interested in this program. I guess that I have to join in first. Will need your help though.


Of course, I'll help, but there are some very good tying instructors in the Dallas area. Many of them are in the Dallas Fly Fishers and you're already a member of them.

A great place for anyone to learn more about fly tying will be the Red River Rendezvous in January.
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10434685 - 11/25/14 10:16 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
txww Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/25/03
Posts: 120
I think that's a pretty good idea and worth the price of admission if you're interested in trying to improve your skills or validate them.

I think my only comment would be is that hopefully the local reviewer has earned the award for the flies they are reviewing themselves. I'm sure they'll shake out the bugs as this gains traction.

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#10434731 - 11/25/14 10:45 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
J-Moe Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 04/04/14
Posts: 2612
Loc: Brenham, TX
I am intrigued by this as well. I would love to improve my tying skills and experiment with new flies. It also looks like this is a great organization in general. The biggest question is if I can learn from a written review rather than having someone stand over my shoulder and helping me. It is a certification program but it does seem to have benefit as a training aid to us new fly tiers. It would also be an investment in a number of feathers and other tying materials I don't currently have in my collection.

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#10434905 - 11/25/14 12:30 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
moonriver Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 08/15/09
Posts: 4585
I joined IFFF last week, started to buy materials for those flies. We do have our own "at large evaluator": Mr. Jere Anderson and Mr. Fred dupre. I did talk to Mr. Dupre for advise and materials suggestion. I do learn quite few things by reading the book and watching the vedios. I sincerely hope that RexW, Mr. Anderson, Mr. Dupre, or Richard can organize special events addressing this program.
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#10434910 - 11/25/14 12:35 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: txww]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Originally Posted By: txww
I think my only comment would be is that hopefully the local reviewer has earned the award for the flies they are reviewing themselves.


I agree with this one, it just makes sense to have it. I read somewhere that the local reviewers have been asked to get the award. But, since it is a new program, all of them do not have it yet. The IFFF website lists the people that have earned it and at least one of the DFW area folks has the Bronze award, Fred DuPree.
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10434934 - 11/25/14 12:44 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: J-Moe]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Originally Posted By: J-Moe
The biggest question is if I can learn from a written review rather than having someone stand over my shoulder and helping me. It is a certification program but it does seem to have benefit as a training aid to us new fly tiers.


It sounds like this is one of the goals of the program, to help people become better tyer's. The local review allows for some hands on feedback and even for the potential to have fly tying lessons or classes to help people learn the skills and patterns. If you don't live in an area where a "local" person is located then you might have to mail flies back and forth for feedback.

The final review would just be written comments, but by that point, you would have already discussed the flies with the local contact before mailing them off and hopefully their written comments would match what the local person had said. (That's the theory anyway. smile )
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10434944 - 11/25/14 12:49 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: moonriver]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Originally Posted By: moonriver
I sincerely hope that RexW, Mr. Anderson, Mr. Dupre, or Richard can organize special events addressing this program.


Yes, something like this can done.

What you do have in mind? Formal tying classes on each of the patterns or more of a summary type presentation at one of the local fly fishing events?

Just add a couple of comments. Jere Anderson is usually at the Allen Cabela's tying flies on Wednesday evenings. You'll find me there sometimes too. You will also find local fly tyer's from both the Dallas and Fort Worth clubs on Saturday mornings at both Bass Pro shops and at the Allen Cabela's. The Dallas club has also been offering some tying classes at the Allen Cabela's on Tuesday evenings, but they may be over until after the holidays. The local clubs provide several opportunities in the DFW area to learn to tie flies.


Edited by RexW (11/25/14 12:55 PM)
_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10435267 - 11/25/14 03:48 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
txkayaker Offline
Angler

Registered: 07/09/12
Posts: 401
Loc: Longview,Tx
I am interested in improving my fly tying with this program. I guess my only opportunity to get some in person advise will be at the RED River Rendezvous.
_________________________
Dale Hively
East Texas Fly Fisher Club

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#10435346 - 11/25/14 04:29 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: txkayaker]
RexW Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 2861
Loc: Sherman, TX
Originally Posted By: txkayaker
I am interested in improving my fly tying with this program. I guess my only opportunity to get some in person advise will be at the RED River Rendezvous.


Dale, I don't know if it is the only opportunity, but it will be a very good opportunity. Usually at these multiple day tying events, some really talented folks will show up on Friday and at least one of them is usually tying pretty much night and day on Friday and Saturday. Everything seems to slow down early on Sunday. It will be an opportunity to spend some one on one time with some tyers and teachers. I hope you can join us, it'll be fun!

I haven't talked to Fred, but Jere is planning to attend.


_________________________
Rex W
FFF Certified Casting Instructor
TFO Pro Staff

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#10435351 - 11/25/14 04:34 PM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
txkayaker Offline
Angler

Registered: 07/09/12
Posts: 401
Loc: Longview,Tx
Yes Sir, I went to the one a few years ago at Bonham State Park. I learned a LOT on the Saturday that I was there.
_________________________
Dale Hively
East Texas Fly Fisher Club

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#10436336 - 11/26/14 12:31 AM Re: IFFF Fly Tying Skills Awards Program [Re: RexW]
moonriver Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 08/15/09
Posts: 4585
RexW, sorry take me so long to reply. Just got home not long ago.

I attended those 4-day DFF fly tying event at Cabelas, and learned a lot. Mr. Jere Anderson showed me how to tie "Goose Midge emerger". We didn't have the goose material. had to use other material:





After reading the book and watching the video, I know where my deficiencies are. It's a good way to learn.

Originally Posted By: RexW
Originally Posted By: moonriver
I sincerely hope that RexW, Mr. Anderson, Mr. Dupre, or Richard can organize special events addressing this program.


Yes, something like this can done.

What you do have in mind? Formal tying classes on each of the patterns or more of a summary type presentation at one of the local fly fishing events?

Just add a couple of comments. Jere Anderson is usually at the Allen Cabela's tying flies on Wednesday evenings. You'll find me there sometimes too. You will also find local fly tyer's from both the Dallas and Fort Worth clubs on Saturday mornings at both Bass Pro shops and at the Allen Cabela's. The Dallas club has also been offering some tying classes at the Allen Cabela's on Tuesday evenings, but they may be over until after the holidays. The local clubs provide several opportunities in the DFW area to learn to tie flies.
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